Released: 2011, Metal On Metal Records
Reviewer: Robert Williams
TRUE METAL VICTORY is the third full length album by Battlerage, a four-piece traditional heavy metal band hailing from Santiago, Chile.
TRUE METAL VICTORY opens with a brief melodic instrumental dubbed "Battlepath" before properly thrashing it out on "Return Of The Axeman" a buzzsaw, street metal rocker with killer guitar solos and drumheads beaten all to shit. There is some amazing lead guitar work courtesy of guest guitarist Gabriel Hidalgo that really makes this band's sound over the top. Vocalist Fox- Lin Torres sings with a heavy accent and a gruff, biting mid-range approach, sounding a bit unique as a result. Musically I could best describe Battlerage as Chile's answer to Germany's true metal warriors Sacred Steel. The battle hymns these guys deliver are really heavy and beefed up, at times, with double kick thrash assaults and blazing soloing, yet the backbone of the bands songwriting adheres more to traditional eighties heavy metal. "Raw Metal" for instance, is a perfect example of this.
The instrumental "Stygia" has a sorrowful, haunting riff that captivates the listener with it's moody, gloomy funeral march like aura and serves as the perfect intro to the crushing, sledgehammer of a tune "My Will Be Done" further demonstrating that although Battlerage can bring the speed and intensity, they can also unleash their brand of heaviness with a doomier delivery. Considering that throughout the duration of the disc the listener is treated to melodic twin guitar passages courtesy of lone guitarist Daniel Roman, it kind of makes you wonder how they pull this material off live in the absence of a second axeman.
TRUE METAL VICTORY was produced by drummer Francisco Vera and recorded, mixed and mastered by Cristian Rodriguez. The production on this album is stellar, with a thick and thunderous bass heavy approach. The album artwork was provided by Jowita Kaminska-Peruzzi features a jackal horned, skull warrior thrusting a battleaxe into the sky in victory and complements the accompanying album well. The CD booklet is crammed pack full of pictures, lyrics and liner notes, as is the case with all Metal On Metal products. I would recommend this release to fans of Jag Panzer, Sacred Steel, Grave Digger and all other traditional metal performed with an aggressive flair.